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Windows 11 Customization: 6 Best Apps & Mods to Use Extend the functionality of your PC with these stunning apps




Customization is an important way of enhancing the user experience, and we have selected a few apps to help in the customization process.

It is safe to download customization apps, if they are from the Microsoft store, or if you have done your due diligence. 

Most of the apps discussed are from the Microsoft store and will be useful tools for productivity and entertainment. 

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There are many reasons to rave about Windows 11. The redesigned Taskbar, its new Start menu, and the modified Settings app are just a few improved elements to excite you.

Like Oliver Twist, you may need some more and want to improve on an already great product. In this article, we will explore some of the best Windows 11 applications to enhance your experience.

We will dig into the newly designed Microsoft Store and recommend some of our favorite apps for enhanced productivity, media playback, and more. We will also explore some apps around the internet that are must-haves on Windows 11.

Can you customize Windows 11?

One of the most endearing features of the latest Windows operating system is customization. Windows 11 already has built-in functions to customize the looks, features, and other functionalities.

Also, you can download apps from the Microsoft Store to customize your PC better. So, there is no limit to the options available to you.

Is it safe to add functionality to Windows 11 with 3rd-party applications?

Microsoft verifies all applications on the Microsoft Store. This means they adhere to content, privacy, and security rules. You are assured that they are not viruses or malware.

If you choose to download apps from other locations, you must do your research. We suggest reading the app’s reviews, as this, more often than not, will show both sides of the user experience.

With that in mind, adding customization to Windows 11 is purely yours and should be a safe process as long as you are sure of the apps you have chosen to download.

What are the best apps to customize my Windows 11 PC?

For busy professionals and curious minds using Windows 11, FeedLab is the app that gets you all your important content in one place. It is an RSS reader and content aggregator.

With this tool, you will effectively monitor articles that have been read and those that have not. It has a Save for later feature to save unread content that you find interesting for a later time.

What you may find most intriguing is its offline feature. With this feature, you would not require an internet connection to read your favorite articles. This is particularly interesting if you are traveling through places with poor internet signals.

This tool is based on Feedly and would require a Feedly account to unlock all the features. It is a free app on the Microsoft store.

Additional features:

Color customization for categories

Automatic settings synchronization on devices


If you’re looking for the best content aggregator for Windows 11, try FeedLab.

Download Free

Start11 on Windows 11 offers many Start menu functions on the new operating system. It allows you to select from various start menu designs, move the Taskbar to the bottom or top of the screen, and even alter the menu color.

It also restores the taskbar context menu to the Windows 11 Start menu, among other things. Start11 includes page support for Start menu layouts, improved search options, and a feature for creating shortcut links.

This app also works on Windows 10 and will transfer your Windows 10 Start menu to a Windows 11-styled Start menu.

Additional features:

Start menu position switching

Taskbar to the top of the screen

Tiled interface

⇒ Get Start11

For Windows 11, the native File Explorer received a slight upgrade, but this is far from being overhauled. Files App is a modern-looking third-party file manager. It may be used with a mouse, a touchpad, or a keyboard. 

The software available for Windows 10 received a huge update for Windows 11 and promised a file explorer experience that is more contemporary and compatible with Windows 11. 

It has a fluent design, a tabbed interface, and several useful features.

This tool can be downloaded and installed for free.

Additional features:

File previews

Detection of cloud drive

Tags for labeling files

Multiple tabs

⇒ Get Files App

Expert tip:

It contains sophisticated options for further customization, albeit these functions may have a learning curve.

Additional feature:

Split Mode

Show system tray on hover

Fill Taskbar when maximized

⇒ Get RoundedTB

In Windows 11, Microsoft included a Widgets panel, but it leaves much to be desired, and you will rather use BeWidgets. 

BeWidgets is the software for Windows 11 if you’re a widget aficionado. BeWidgets is a desktop widget creator that lets you build entirely customized, personalized widgets.

With this app, you may customize the time, weather, cryptos, stock market, and app shortcuts. In addition, it transforms your desktop into something useful, customized, and one-of-a-kind.

It is much better because it features a highly user-friendly interface with an easy learning curve.

There are constant additions to its functionality. For example, you can expect widgets for RSS feeds, text, and widgets for music that can incorporate music streaming and local media.

The app is available for free on the Microsoft Store.

Additional features:

Light and dark theme

Switch between layouts

⇒ Get BeWidgets

Read more about this topic

The WhatsApp desktop app has now screen share on Windows 11

Why are so many gamers moving to Windows 11? [Stats]

Windows 11 offers some exciting wallpapers, but you may want more since they may get boring.

If you want your desktop to have a little more personality, we recommend Lively Wallpaper. It may be downloaded for free from the Microsoft Store.

This app isn’t your typical wallpaper software; it’s one-of-a-kind, allowing Windows 11 users to set webpages, videos, and GIFs as their desktop backgrounds. You may also add dynamic backgrounds to your desktop to improve the look and feel.

Additional features:

Support for multiple displays of varying aspect ratio

Changes based on system audio

Dark and Light theme

⇒ Get Lively Wallpaper

How do I change app icons on Windows 11?

This list has been made in no particular order, and the best windows 11 extensions would depend on your likes and preferences.

You can add more customization by using Android apps on Windows 11. Our guide on the best Android apps on Windows 11 will be a useful resource.

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5 Best Smart Home Apps For Windows 10/11

5 best smart home apps for Windows 10/11




Looking for the best smart home apps for Windows 10 PC? We got you covered. Read this guide to learn what are the best smart home programs to use in 2023.

This post gives you some of the best smart home programs that can be used to automate your home devices. The software reviewed in this article differ from each other in terms of some features —  though they all provide general services which ensure convenient automation of devices.

OpenHAB has a large following among smart home users, as it has an active community of users. The software uses a stable open source Javascript which allows multiple support of devices and ensures you can easily integrate different devices on the software. This tool uses a powerful software engine which enables users flexibility as there are several plugins which can be installed to ensure user preference is achieved.

Your devices can easily be controlled using specific apps and users can customize the software with the inbuilt design tools. So therefore, OpenHAB is an excellent home software app to use due to its flexibility and compatibility to hundreds of devices.

⇒ Download OpenHAB

RELATED: Asus’ Zenbo robot brings the sci-fi world closer to home

Castle OS is a popular smart home software that has integration with over a hundred different smart devices. Users are able to use the various features to conveniently automate their homes. Castle OS supports several popular home apps such as UPB, WeMo, LightwaveRF, Sonos, Ecobee and Nest,

Users can access the unique voice control system by connecting a Microsoft Kinect, this allows ease in controlling several devices by saying command prompts.

Meanwhile, Castle OS helps keep track of your home energy consumption which allows you to know the devices consuming much power in your home.

The scheduling feature is also effective as you can easily create time scheduled events and receive notifications of events via Email or SMS. Also, Castle OS is an excellent Home software to employ for your Windows O.S and is compatible with Windows 10.

⇒ Download Castle OS

READ ALSO: Cortana now lets you control your smart home devices

When it comes to a home apps that features state of the art technology and features, Creston is up there. The software may be of a premium price to other home app software but it gives good value for the price.

Creston specifically develops devices which can be purchased in addition to the software. The user interface allows for customization by users and it can be ideal for setting up a conference center.

The voice control is also automated to allow ease and convenience in controlling smart home devices.  Overall Creston is a good solution for smart home users as they get extensive features from the software.

Expert tip:

RELATED: Bitdefender Box 2 aims to be the best IoT antivirus device

Iobroker is a budding smart home apps software which has a thriving community and offers quality services. The software can be used to control devices in all areas of your home from the garage, kitchen to individual rooms in your home.

It is compatible to multiple devices which makes it ideal home app software. iobroker uses an open Javascript and supports Windows,Linux, OSX and Raspberry devices.

The user interface is clean and easy to use for beginners with all menu arranged precisely for scalability. You can easily set voice controls and use the command prompts to control various devices in your home or office.

Lastly, iobroker is an efficient home app software as it performs the basic needs of a smart home owner and supports numerous operating systems.

⇒ Download Iobroker

RELATED: Best artificial intelligence antivirus programs for Windows 10

EventGhost is a simple automation software that allows users to access different input devices to trigger control of connected devices. It does not provide extensive features like the other software on the list but it lightweight and can perform the majority of the tasks needed by a smart home user on a small scale.

In addition, EventGhost allows the use of input devices like wireless remote to control home devices. The interface as to be expected is simple with different task icons in the menu which have specific functions.

To enjoy more features, you would need to download several plugins which could be the downside of the app. Infrared motions work exquisitely and can be easily setup by following the tutorials on the software website. You can always try EventGhost since it is free to download and check out the features.

⇒ Download EventGhost


These are the best smart home software for smart home owners. They have been tested and found to possess features needed. In addition, they are all compatible with Windows 10.

Meanwhile, EventGhost is lightweight to use but with limited features while Creston is the most expensive of the apps listed above. Our recommended smart home software to utilize in your home is OpenHAB, as it gives all the necessary features and compatibility needed for a smart home software.


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4 Best Youtube Volume Booster Apps For Windows 10/11

4 Best YouTube Volume Booster Apps for Windows 10/11




YouTube volume booster apps enhance and improve the video-watching experience.

In this article, we explore the best volume booster apps for YouTube.

The list contains both standalone software audio enhancers, as well as browser extensions.

Some of the products on this list are pay-to-use, while some are free, or offer a free trial.

Depending on the audio gear you are using, at times, you may feel the YouTube volume to be on the lower side.

This is mostly the case when using a lower end or old headphones. This where the YouTube volume booster apps come in handy.

Volume booster apps help increase the overall volume of your headphone and speakers and make it sound louder without distorting the audio.

In this article, we explore the best volume booster apps for YouTube in Windows 10.

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If you are a music aficionado and have a paid plan for YouTube Music, Spotify, or Apple Music, access them in a browser that has built-in integrations: Opera GX. It’s light and fast, so you’ll get buffer-free music, plus it has a built-in sound booster to tweak your volume.

The browser is great for music streaming, with quick access to your favorite platforms, permanent login to avoid server connection issues, not to mention a built-in VPN to change servers whenever the service may throttle.

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If you are looking for an all-around tool to increase the volume and enhance the audio, Boom 3D from Global Delight is a premium tool to consider. You can enjoy enhanced audio with all your media on both Mac and Windows systems.

Boom 3D is the enhanced version of Boom 2 and comes with additional features, including a pan system volume booster that works with YouTube on Chrome and other web browsers as well.

Boom 3D

Boost your YouTube volumes using this powerful sound customization software today!

Free trial Visit website

Volume Booster, as the name suggests, is a Google Chrome extension that increases and amplifies your max volume. It works on any web apps that you are playing on your Chrome browser, including YouTube.

Dragging the slider forward and backward will increase and decrease the volume for the current tab. When enabled, it will show a blue shared rectangle icon on the tab to let you know it is working.

⇒ Get Volume Booster

FxSound2 is a freemium YouTube volume booster tool. Similar to Boom 3D, FxSound2 comes with some audio enhancement features along with built-in presets.

Furthermore, you can select the device to enhance the audio and use the predefined presets like Movies, Music, and Bass Boosting to get the best out of the tool.

⇒ Get FxSound2

LetaSoft Sound Booster is a premium sound booster software for Windows 10. It is a client-based app that offers system-wide audio enhancement.

LetaSoft Sound Booster claims to boost your system volume above a maximum of up to 500%. Apart from the browser, it can also amplify the volume of communication software like Skype and media players.

To boost volume, LetaSoft Sound Booster uses two methods – Code Injection and APO effects. In addition, you can enable SuperBoost to add an extra boost.

⇒ Get LetaSoft Sound Booster

If you listen to music on YouTube, try the YouTube Music app as it offers enhanced volume control and loud output.

To increase the YouTube volume externally use volume booster apps like Boom 3D, FxSound, or the Chrome extension.

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6 Ways To Develop Ios Apps On Windows

Have a Windows computer and want to develop iOS apps? It’s not easy, so you might be thinking of giving in and buying a Mac computer instead. Before you do that, read this tutorial. We cover six ways to build iOS and iPadOS applications on Windows.

If you’re an aspiring Android developer, don’t miss our guide that will help you get started developing Android apps on Windows.

Why It’s Hard to Develop iOS Apps on Windows

Apple’s walled garden makes it almost impossible to develop iOS apps without a Mac. Xcode, the sole integrated development environment (IDE) for building iOS apps, is only available on macOS. Important development features, like simulating an iOS device on the computer, are only possible with Xcode installed.

Unlike Google’s Play Store, which allows uploading apps via a website, the only way to upload iOS builds to Apple’s App Store is by using software tools exclusive to macOS: Xcode, Transporter (a macOS exclusive app), and the Altool command line program. It is literally impossible to publish an app on the App Store without using macOS.

But considering how expensive Mac computers are, simply buying a Mac computer is not an option for many people. Fortunately, there are a few ways to develop iOS apps using just a Windows computer. One approach is using Windows to access a macOS machine and developing the entire app using Xcode. Another is to write the code on Windows using cross-platform development tools. Read on to learn the specific options for both of these approaches.

1. React Native and Expo

React Native is Facebook’s Javascript framework for building Android and iOS apps. You can make apps that look and feel like they belong on iOS, as React Native lets you use native UI components. This also results in faster performance than something like a WebView app, which simply renders a responsive mobile website. The popularity of React means that there are plenty of relevant tutorials and tools to help you along with your development.

React Native is even better when you use it with Expo, a collection of helpful development features. For developing on Windows, the Expo Application Services (EAS) are especially important: they provide a way to build and submit your iOS apps in the cloud. While Expo itself is free, EAS is paid.

A downside of React Native is that it runs Javascript and does not compile into native code, so the performance won’t be the best, even if it is good.

Want to optimize your code? Check out these useful Javascript one-liners.

2. Flutter and Codemagic

Flutter is Google’s framework for building cross-platform applications using the Dart programming language. The main distinction between Flutter and React Native is that Flutter doesn’t use native UI components, instead compiling to native code, giving it even faster performance.

Codemagic is a paid cloud service that lets you build and publish your Flutter iOS apps without a macOS computer.

A minor downside is that Flutter and the Dart programming language aren’t as popular as React and Javascript, so there aren’t as many resources available.

3. Haxe

Haxe is a programming language that can build applications for a huge number of different platforms, including iOS. It’s a great choice if you want your application to run everywhere: desktop, mobile, and Web (both frontend and backend). While it’s very popular with game developers, Haxe can still be used to build iOS apps with static UI.

Haxe is a jack of all trades but a master of none. As its strength comes from building applications for many platforms, it won’t have features tailored specifically to iOS app development, so you may not get the native look and feel of iOS that you would with React Native.

Have a new interest in programming? Check out the best YouTube channels that can teach you how to code.

4. Adobe AIR

If you have experience developing with Adobe Flash or Actionscript in the past, then Adobe AIR might be right for you. Being based on Flash, AIR makes it easy to build rich and animated experiences, like 2D games, with a single codebase for multiple platforms. With AIR’s toolchain, you can generate Android, iOS, and desktop app files directly on Windows. When used in conjunction with Adobe’s Animate CC, it becomes the fastest way to bring your idea to the screen.

One downside is that AIR’s vector-based graphics lead to high battery and CPU usage. Additionally, to achieve core functionality like in-app purchases, third-party software called AIR Native Extensions (ANEs) are needed. These are usually not free.

Under Harman, the AIR platform itself may cost you money too. You can use Adobe AIR for free if you make under $50K a year in revenue. However, this free tier requires including an AIR splash screen in your application. Paid tiers with no splash screen, starting at $199 a year, are required for anyone making more revenue.

5. Rent a Mac in the Cloud

A legitimate but pricey option is paying to access a real macOS machine in the cloud. You can do this by paying providers like MacinCloud, MacCloud, or MacStadium a recurring fee. If you go with this method, it’s best to rent it for the minimum amount of time you need to build and upload your app, then cancel it as soon as you’re done. You would do almost all of the programming on your Windows machine using one of the development methods listed above, then send the output to the macOS cloud instance for building/uploading.

6. Install a macOS Virtual Machine

If you still want the full macOS + Xcode development experience, you can install a macOS virtual machine (VM) on your Windows computer. This is nice, as you get all of the native development tools that Apple intended you to use to build iOS apps. You can do all of the design, programming, building, and uploading to the App Store entirely on macOS with this option.

Good to know: don’t want to wait until the official release of the latest macOS version? Install the beta version and enjoy upcoming features sooner.

Frequently Asked Questions Is Adobe AIR still functional?

You may recall Adobe killing Flash and turning Adobe AIR over to a different company, Harman, effectively abandoning the AIR platform. While this is true, AIR is surprisingly still viable today.

Harman appears to be doing a great job actively developing and improving the AIR platform. They are working on an AIR developer website with documentation, tutorials, and community discussion. There appears to be a decent amount of community interest, so continued support for AIR is likely. However, AIR is nowhere as popular as other platforms.

Is it better to develop an app for the iPad or iPhone?

If your development platform doesn’t make it easy to build for both iPhone and iPad, then choose the iPhone. More people carry iPhones with them and are more likely to use your app when outside. Additionally, an iPhone-designed app can still be used on iPad, but the reverse isn’t necessarily true.

How do I test an iOS app on Windows without an Apple mobile device?

Using BrowserStack’s App Live service, you can upload any IPA file to a physical Apple mobile device, then use the device directly in your browser to test and debug your app.

How can I share my iOS app without publishing it on the App Store?

You can upload your app file to Diawi for a shareable install link. Anyone can install your app with the link, though it can only be used 25 times when using a free Diawi account. While it is extremely limited, Diawi is your best bet on Windows, as uploading to TestFlight is only possible with macOS.

Image credit: Pexels. All screenshots by Brandon Li.

Brandon Li

Brandon Li is a technology enthusiast with experience in the software development industry. As a result, he has a lot of knowledge about computers and is passionate about sharing that knowledge with other people. While he has mainly used Windows since early childhood, he also has years of experience working with other major operating systems.

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6 Best Vegan Mobile Apps To Start Your Meat

Taking those first steps towards veganism may feel daunting, but there are tons of resources available that can help you make the switch and stick to it. Whether you need help identifying vegan products, making meal plans, or getting some extra motivation, there are some great smartphone apps you can download now to make these things easier. 

The apps listed below were created by like-minded vegan individuals wanting to help those who are new or even long-term vegans continue to make a positive impact. So no matter where you are on this journey, these are some useful apps to try for yourself.

Table of Contents

Not sure if that box of crackers is vegan? Sometimes figuring this out is tricky, especially when labels can be misleading. You can skip right through all the questioning by using the Vegan Pocket app, which allows you to scan any product and have it tell you whether or not it’s vegan. 

Press the Scan button, and you’ll be able to allow access to your phone’s camera, where you can then scan the product’s barcode directly within the app. You’ll get an answer almost instantly, saving you the time to look up products or ingredients yourself and make your shopping trips effortless. 

Download for iOS

Need help planning some weekly meals? If you’re short on time and want to take the guesswork out of vegan meal planning, the free ForksMealPlanner app is a fantastic help. Created by the folks from Forks Over Knives, the app provides tons of free recipe ideas, a daily meal planner, a shopping list, a weekend prep guide, and more. 

If you want to, you can also upgrade the app to get access to everything it offers, such as alternate meal plans and over a thousand recipes. However, the free version itself provides plenty of help, making it easy to plan meals. 

This app is a great, easy way to find vegan recipes, with many of them available for free. Once you find some recipes you like, you can save them and add their ingredients to a shopping list within the app. 

You can find recipes for dinner, lunch, dessert, and even recipes for more specific diets such as gluten-free or raw vegan foods. You can also search for particular foods. All in all, this app has tons of great recipes to give you some meal inspiration and help you make great vegan food.

Download for iOS

The minute I opened this app, my mouth started to water. Need even more vegan recipe ideas? This app is a great resource, with a beautiful layout and amazing pictures of food that’ll get you excited to start cooking. 

You can filter recipes to find ones perfect for your diet, and you can favorite the ones you like the most to find them again easily. All the recipes listed on the app are free, but you can also buy bundles of recipes, usually for very cheap or by completing an action such as sharing the app. Oh She Glows is one of the best vegan recipe apps, as you’ll find out once you try it.

abillion allows you to write reviews for vegan food products or restaurants and then gives you $1 to donate to a vegan-related cause of your choice. If you want to stay motivated and help create more change globally, this app is a must-try. 

The app has many social media aspects where you can see what other people have reviewed, find food in your area, and discover new products to try. It’s a great way to find support and further your vegan lifestyle. Out of all the apps in this list, abillion may be my favorite, simply because it allows you to make some tangible change just by eating good food!

If you’re finding that you’re having a hard time tracking nutrition information while going vegan, this app inspired by doctor Michael Gregor’s work can help immensely. Instead of monitoring macronutrients, all you need to do is track how much of each type of food you’re eating per day, such as beans, fruits, greens, etc.

The app also lists how much is considered one serving and the different types of these foods that count. Getting your nutrition in this way is much less daunting and shows just how easy it is to eat well as a vegan. 

Go Vegan With These Apps

Once you start using the apps above, you’ll likely find yourself excited to begin your new mode of eating. Or, if you already are a vegan, these apps can help you learn even more and improve your diet. 

How To Disable Background Apps And Startup Apps On Windows 11.

If you have updated to Windows 11 and are currently going through the operating system to find and adjust some of the new settings, you’ll want to make sure you disable background apps. If not completely at least disable some of the apps and programs that are running that you don’t generally use much.

Related: How to sign in to Windows 11 automatically. (Windows 11 automatic sign-in)

Even if telemetry data collection doesn’t bother you, these apps and programs are also wasting system resources that could be better used elsewhere. Thankfully, a good portion of these background apps can be disabled so that when you close them they are fully closed until the next time you open them. Another good habit to get into is preventing certain apps from launching at startup, which we’ll go over as well as the process has changed a little bit since Windows 10.

Originally there were options to disable background apps individually, but they seem to have been removed from Windows 11 at this point in time. So the only option left is to blanket disable them using the Windows Registry editor. Before you begin though, make sure you create a system restore point.

How do you disable background apps and programs on Windows 11? Stop programs and apps running in the background on Windows.

Once you have a system restore point set, open the Registry Editor by searching regedit from the Start menu and selecting it when it appears. Once you have it open, navigate to the following location:


If you wish to undo this change simply go back to GlobalUserDisabled and change the Value data to 0.

How do you disable apps and programs from running at startup on Windows 11?

The best way to prevent apps from starting when you boot your computer is from the Task Manager. To do this follow the steps shown below.

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